New Media Law in Russia
The Russian State Duma passed a law on 15 November that designates foreign media as “agents”, who must expect far-reaching obligations such as more rigorous and more frequent examination of their finances. Before the amendment comes into force, it now passes through the so called Federation Council. In addition to many other foreign media creators like CNN or Radio Liberty, also the “Deutsche Welle” could be affected by the new law.
The Foundation for Freedom strongly condemns the proposed media legislation.
The Russian government continues to massively restrict liberal values such as the freedom of press and opinion. Allegedly, the Kremlin reacts to a similar US legislation, which in turn leaves the Russian propaganda channels “Russia Today” and “Sputnik” to declare themselves as foreign agents or being liable to prosecution. Russian state media, which also expanded their presence to Germany, deliberately contribute to disinformation and interference in the public agenda in Germany and in Russia. However, in the context of existing repression and suppression, which media representatives face regularly in Russia, the reaction gives the impression that the Kremlin has sought and found a justification for an existing practice.
From the 23rd to the 25th of November, the 16th Petersburger Dialogue will take place, where the Friedrich Naumann Foundation for Freedom will participate. The German-Russian Civil Society Forum should be used as an opportunity to discuss the grievances with the Russian partners – also and especially at the official level.